The Japanese news publication Mianichi reported that 1.4 billion yen (R199 million) was stolen from 1,400 ATMs in convenience stores in Japan in the space of two hours on 15 May.
According to the report, “police suspect that the cash was withdrawn at ATMs using counterfeit credit cards containing account information leaked from a South African bank”.
“Japanese police will work with South African authorities through the International Criminal Police Organization to look into the major theft, including how credit card information was leaked,” said Mianichi.
The ATM transaction data “suggests that information from 1,600 credit cards issued by a South African bank was used”.
The Yomiuri Shimbun reported that “each transaction involved the removal of ¥100,000, the maximum withdrawal limit set for ATMs, and there were more than 14,000 transactions in the case”.
“Police suspect that a group of more than 100 people extracted the money from the ATMs, which were located in Tokyo and 16 prefectures,” the report said.
Update: Standard Bank taken for R300 million
Standard Bank said it has been the victim of a sophisticated, coordinated fraud incident.
“This involved the withdrawal of cash using a small number of fictitious cards at various ATMs in Japan,” said Standard Bank’s Ross Linstrom.
“The target of the fraud has been Standard Bank and there has been no financial loss for customers.”